Thursday, May 17, 2007
Kansas was a nice place at this time last year. The Mountaineers went to Kansas in 2006 for Collegiate Cycling National's with high hopes and came out with an 11th place nationals finish! Not bad at all! This year was a different story with Kansas deciding not to play nice. The area suffered numerous tornado's and heavy rains and thunderstorms that turned the race course into a disaster area a few days before riders arrived. Consequently, the course was rerouted and it included a 1.5 mile section through rough gravel. Needless to say the race would become interesting real fast.
The criterium was a madhouse from the get-go. Riders complained about the gravel as they knew it could change the race very quickly. You didn't necessarily have to be the strongest rider to win, but if you had some luck on your side, your chances were certainly better. Reports of flats throughout the field were common and by the end of the day, over 170 flats were reported. Both David Forkner and Michael Wilson suffered from flat tires but Ross Bowden was able to survive the 96 miles and 90+ degree temperatures and rode to a 43rd place finish. (if you click the picture at the top, you can see Ross on the left side dodging bikes as they fall)
The Team Time Trial was certainly a better situation for the Mountaineers as they used their skills to the best of their ability. The men took an 8th place finish, with only one minute off the winning time posted by Western Washington University. Congrats to Michael, David, Ross, and Justin Tucker on a superb finish! Watch the video below captured by Jerid Gooding.
You have to love the sound of the bikes as they ride by. Sounds like a rocket, no doubt. The guys would move on to the criterium on the last day of Nationals and Ross Bowden certainly wasn't finished. Ross thrashed his was the the front and wound up finishing 13th in a bunch sprint for the line. Michael and David also had strong finishes with 23rd and 27th respectively. Congrats to Jerid, Michael, Ross, David, and Justin, for making the trip to nationals! It was another top 20 finish for the Appalachian State Cycling Team!
-App State Cycling
For the second straight year and the fourth year overall, the Appalachian State Cycling Team cruised to another Atlantic Coast Conference Championship! The Appalachian Mountaineers rapped up the conference title in what was described as some of the hardest racing of the season at West Virginia University.
In the criterium the Apps placed riders in the top 10 in each category. Ross Bowden showed the conference how the Apps rolled by rocketing to a first place finish with a little help from teammates such as Justin, Michael, Travis, and David. It was a huge win that put the Apps over the top in the Division II title and it showed the conference that the Mountaineers didn't plan to relinquish the conference title after winning it last year as well. With an onslaught of cycling talent and youth, ASU will return as the clear favorite for their 3rd straight ACCC title (5th overall) next year as well.
Special recognition also was awarded to the ASU Cycling Team as the team was named the "Club Sports Team of the Year" for 2006-2007. The award comes after a hard year of work by each member of the team and a roster that has grown from only a hand full of riders five years ago to a team that now bolsters over 50 riders! We'll now take a moment to thank those who have contributed to the success of the team into making it what it is today. Those we wish to thank are: Ben Early, Taylor Jones, Ross Bowden, David Forkner, Travis Hurt, Michael Trivette, Justin Tucker, Noah Niwinski, Michael Rigby, and many more. These guys have worked hard to bring people into the team, create a good image of the team, build partnerships with team sponsors, and create a social environment where everyone is accepted. Indeed the ASU Cycling Team is alive and well, and we couldn't have done it without the support of the aforementioned riders and team sponsors. Please visit our team sponsors (their links are on the right side of the page). Thanks to everyone for your support!
-App State Cycling